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U.S. taper to have 'limited' impact on Korea: finance ministry

SEJONG, March 20 (Yonhap) -- The U.S. move to further scale back its monthly bond purchases is within an expected range and that its impact on the Korean economy will be "limited," a senior finance ministry official said Thursday. The remarks by Deputy Finance Minister Eun Sung-soo came after the U.S. Federal Reserve decided to cut its monthly bond-purchasing program from US$65 billion to $55 billion starting next month. This marks the third time that the Fed has decided to taper its quantitative easing put in place to stimulate its economy by pumping money into the market.

Asian shares down after Yellen hints at rate hike

Asian markets fell on Thursday after the head of the US Federal Reserve hinted that the central bank could raise interest rates sooner than expected. The comments by Janet Yellen followed an expected third successive cut in the Fed's quantitative easing (QE) stimulus programme, and took markets by surprise, boosting the dollar and sending Wall Street tumbling. Tokyo dropped 1.65 percent, or 238.29 points, to 14,224.23, Sydney gave up 1.15 percent, or 61.6 points, to 5,294 and Seoul fell 0.94 percent, or 18.16 points, to close at 1,919.52.

Asian shares down after Yellen hints at rate hike

Asian markets fell on Thursday after the head of the US Federal Reserve hinted that the central bank could raise interest rates sooner than expected. The comments by Janet Yellen followed an expected third successive cut in the Fed's quantitative easing (QE) stimulus programme, and took markets by surprise, boosting the dollar and sending Wall Street tumbling. Tokyo dropped 1.65 percent, or 238.29 points, to 14,224.23, Sydney gave up 1.15 percent, or 61.6 points, to 5,294 and Seoul fell 0.94 percent, or 18.16 points, to close at 1,919.52.

No faking: Royal Mint unveils 12-sided pound coin in a bid to prevent fraud

LONDON - After 30 years of work, the Britain's pound coin is ready for a makeover. The Royal Mint announced plans Wednesday to replace the weighty flat piece with a 12-sided coin made with two separate metals. It resembles a "threepenny bit" — a coin that circulated in Britain from 1937-1971. British officials say the new coin will be harder to fake — as many as 45 million, or 3 per cent, of the pound coins now in circulation are said to be counterfeit.

Japan's Diet set to enact record 96 tril. yen FY 2014 budget Thurs.

Japan's parliament is set to enact on Thursday a draft budget for fiscal 2014 totaling a record 95.88 trillion yen, aimed at cushioning the negative impact on the economy of a planned consumption tax hike in April, lawmakers said Wednesday. At a plenary session of the House of Councillors slated to be held late Thursday, the budget for the fiscal year starting next month is certain to be approved by a majority from the ruling Liberal Democratic Party and its coalition partner the New Komeito party.

In a sign of growing economic ties, China allows direct currency trading with New Zealand

WELLINGTON, New Zealand - In another sign of their growing economic ties, China has allowed its currency to be directly traded with New Zealand's. New Zealand Prime Minister John Key announced the start of trading Wednesday during a trip to China. Previously, a company that needed to trade New Zealand dollars for Chinese yuan in China had to use a third currency, typically the U.S. dollar.

Bitcoin regulations "sufficient" for now: U.S. Treasury

A U.S. Treasury Department official said Tuesday that its current level of regulation of virtual currencies, such as bitcoin, are adequate enough to combat money laundering and prevent terrorist financing. Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence David Cohen, speaking at a Bloomberg News event in New York, pointed to how the department now focuses on "entries and exits" or when physical currency is exchanged for or bought with a virtual one.

Bitcoin regulations "sufficient" for now: U.S. Treasury

A U.S. Treasury Department official said Tuesday that its current level of regulation of virtual currencies, such as bitcoin, are adequate enough to combat money laundering and prevent terrorist financing. Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence David Cohen, speaking at a Bloomberg News event in New York, pointed to how the department now focuses on "entries and exits" or when physical currency is exchanged for or bought with a virtual one.

Crimea will drop Ukrainian hryvnia as of April: RIA

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Crimea is adopting the Russian ruble as its official currency and will drop the Ukrainian hryvnia in April, Russian news agency RIA quoted a senior official in the government of the region, which has voted to become part of Russia, as saying. Crimean authorities had earlier said the hryvnia would to remain an official currency until 2016.

Euro creeps up after sanctions over Crimea vote

The euro edged up against the dollar Monday after the US and Europe slapped sanctions on an inner circle of Russians and Ukrainians who supported Crimea's vote to join Russia. The overwhelming pro-Russia vote Sunday was expected, and the United States and the European Union acted swiftly Monday to impose economic sanctions on key leaders of the breakaway move they denounced as a violation of international law. The euro rose to $1.3921 around 2100 GMT, up from $1.3909 late Friday.
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